Coming off of such an emotional few days, I wish I could tell you that my personal story was filled with sunshine and roses. But, unfortunately, it’s not. My journey – and it has been a journey – began many years ago, but at the time, I didn’t know it. I am an intensely private person, and very guarded. But sometimes you have to put the past behind you, and only then can the healing begin. You might want to grab a tissue (as if we haven’t had enough to cry about in the last two days.)
About 14 years ago, my dad died at the age of 52. It was somewhat sudden, and I was lucky enough to be there when he passed. The next few years were turbulent for me, and three years later I was married and surprised to find out I was pregnant. My pregnancy was normal, until the end, when my blood pressure rose to alarming levels. One morning, when I was about 37 weeks pregnant, I woke and knew something was wrong. The baby, Nicholas, was gone. Just like that. That was 11 years ago today – January 18th, 2003.
I thought I had gone through my darkest time when my father died, but I was wrong. The next year was truly a blur, but my husband and I made it through. I was thrilled to find out I was pregnant again – twins! Due to my history, I was monitored very closely. But five months into my pregnancy I was devastated to find out that one of the babies, Colin, had a serious heart defect, and I would need to wait until I delivered to find out the extent.
Colin and Andrew were born almost full term, which is not too common for twins. Colin was transferred to Columbia Hospital immediately, but his little heart just wasn’t strong enough, and he died nine days later. It was Andrew that saved my life. I don’t like to think about what I might have done if it weren’t for my son. Most infants need their mothers, but I think I needed him more.
So, you are probably wondering what all this has to do with running. Running is my therapy (and clearly I need it). I don’t like to talk to people about my feelings, but I do need an outlet. When I run I talk to myself and work out my problems, think through my fears, and tell myself that everything will be alright – because it will. I have never felt sorry for myself, and please, don’t you either. You have to move forward or the past can paralyze you.
Somehow, through this journey, I found a great listener and friend, Jean Nesbitt. Her friendship and guidance has been invaluable to me, and I wouldn’t be the person I am today without her. It was through Jean that I met Lou, K.c, Maryann, Heather, Joanne, Ben, Rick, April and Nyree – and so many others. This is a special group of people that I am just so fortunate to be a part of – my Selden Hills Warriors family!
I would like to think that right now, at this very moment, Jim is watching over my boys, and those three angels will be watching over all of us tomorrow